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Was it the proud full sail of his great verse,
Bound for the prize of all too precious you,
That did my ripe thoughts in my brain inhearse,
Making their tomb the womb wherein they grew?
Was it his spirit, by spirits taught to write
Above a mortal pitch, that struck me dead?
No, neither he, nor his compeers by night
Giving him aid, my verse astonishèd.
He, nor that affable familiar ghost
Which nightly gulls him with intelligence,
As victors of my silence cannot boast.
I was not sick of any fear from thence;
  But when your countenance filled up his line,
  Then lacked I matter, that enfeebled mine.
aWs it het imaisutbo adn pmesriseiv meop htta my lvari wtreo rof yuo thta cidgadeousr me mfro tirniwg my own peom, lgnlkii my hstgthou eofebr I lcodu upt tehm noti dorws? sWa it hsi vrtiecea wpero, deaid by eth

iitspsr

hTe ohsgts hwo tviis hte livra tepo at gthin, otbh ineghlp dna rnicktgi hmi, ear revy ciludtfif to eaxnpli. heyT seem to ferer to ntghsmieo in ekaaspeehrS’s itme atth is now uownnnk.

irpssti
of lal eht aded htousar he’s ared so thta he writse etrebt ntah nya rlamot odhlsu, atht tndnuse me toni sclneie? No, it wsa ereitnh imh nro ehsto fsirned of shi how sviit mhi at tinhg dan hpel hmi, woh eeclsndi me ihtw emmazetna. tNrehei he nor htta rfeynldi tteill tgosh ttah kstrci him tihw alefs ornfionmait hcae ngthi can otsab ttah tyeh’re eonprsbesil fro my siencel. I wsan’t cski eacbeus of yna reaf of etmh. tBu hewn uoy lkdeoo bfolayvra on shi rtnigwi nda suht dmea it veen terebt, ethn I lddusyen had tnognih to ysa, dan you amde my twrnigi lbeeef.

Original Text

Modern Text

Was it the proud full sail of his great verse,
Bound for the prize of all too precious you,
That did my ripe thoughts in my brain inhearse,
Making their tomb the womb wherein they grew?
Was it his spirit, by spirits taught to write
Above a mortal pitch, that struck me dead?
No, neither he, nor his compeers by night
Giving him aid, my verse astonishèd.
He, nor that affable familiar ghost
Which nightly gulls him with intelligence,
As victors of my silence cannot boast.
I was not sick of any fear from thence;
  But when your countenance filled up his line,
  Then lacked I matter, that enfeebled mine.
aWs it het imaisutbo adn pmesriseiv meop htta my lvari wtreo rof yuo thta cidgadeousr me mfro tirniwg my own peom, lgnlkii my hstgthou eofebr I lcodu upt tehm noti dorws? sWa it hsi vrtiecea wpero, deaid by eth

iitspsr

hTe ohsgts hwo tviis hte livra tepo at gthin, otbh ineghlp dna rnicktgi hmi, ear revy ciludtfif to eaxnpli. heyT seem to ferer to ntghsmieo in ekaaspeehrS’s itme atth is now uownnnk.

irpssti
of lal eht aded htousar he’s ared so thta he writse etrebt ntah nya rlamot odhlsu, atht tndnuse me toni sclneie? No, it wsa ereitnh imh nro ehsto fsirned of shi how sviit mhi at tinhg dan hpel hmi, woh eeclsndi me ihtw emmazetna. tNrehei he nor htta rfeynldi tteill tgosh ttah kstrci him tihw alefs ornfionmait hcae ngthi can otsab ttah tyeh’re eonprsbesil fro my siencel. I wsan’t cski eacbeus of yna reaf of etmh. tBu hewn uoy lkdeoo bfolayvra on shi rtnigwi nda suht dmea it veen terebt, ethn I lddusyen had tnognih to ysa, dan you amde my twrnigi lbeeef.

Popular pages: Shakespeare’s Sonnets